When I sit down at the table in my dining room to do some work, a dog usually lays nearby. Right now, Lola is on the floor under my chair, and Aspen is lying right beside me. These Siberian Huskies are woven into the routine of my days. Each morning, they get up when I do, and we walk a mile before breakfast. There’s combing and training and more walking each day. Every day ends with a trip outside, and them settling in for the night in my bedroom.
Some days, I would rather sleep in, not walk with them in the rain (or wind or snow), or not have to go home to feed them, but when I took them on, I made a commitment to care for them well, and to give them the best life I can.
They are incredibly friendly dogs who love everyone. They want to greet any person or dog who passes us on the street. They are a bit sassy, and quite willing to push the boundaries I set. Taking care of these dogs helps define the rhythms of my life. They certainly add activity, humor and fun. They teach me leadership skills and consistency (or they would surely run wild). They help me get outside daily and pay attention to the natural world around me (squirrel!). They lead me to make connections with people we meet on the street. And they make my life fuller and richer with their presence. I am pretty sure I get more than I give.
What helps shape the rhythms of your life?
What activities or responsibilities enrich your life?
What are you making time for beyond your schoolwork and other work?
How are these things bringing joy or meaning to your life?